Sunset in Shepperton
Jim Ballard is dead. The last decent Englishman shuffles off, to as routine and constant a threat as anything he dealt with in fiction.The man was a master of the everyday cancers of our lives, the way in which eternal human pressures are reworked through the modern era to keep stabbing at us in novel, but essentially ancient, ways. Crystals and desert springs and steering columns in the belly, and a billion empty swimming pools. And in back of it all, a little boy spun around and around by war, still seeking a firm footing after that dizzying discovery.
But there was no firm footing. Domesticity upturned, suburbia torn apart, cold contempt streaming from above and below, and the devils tamed on the printed page. Devils chased perhaps. A search winding through every novel, every story, one man staring into the sun looking for what isn’t there, can’t be found, and in the end has no value.
Fuck. I loved you Jim Ballard. A good man and a great writer. We are diminished.
Tags: england, j g ballard, jimballard, science fiction, sciencefiction